Network type is a contextual consideration in street design. The planned or existing network affects the efficiency of a mass transit system. Grid networks on major streets connecting to large employment activity hubs are the most competitive form in most cities allowing transfers between lines and access to the whole city.
Service frequency, capacity, stop spacing, and destination density are major influences on street design. High-capacity services can offer greater speed, increased trip distance, and reliability, while local routes bridge shorter gaps, but with lower speeds and capacity. Effective networks employ a mix of service types based on contextual considerations and demands.
Network Directness and Legibility
Identify key travel and commuting corridors to help plan direct and frequent service and serve locations where less formalized transit bridges first- and last-mile gaps. The transit system must accommodate both the regular user and the first-time rider, providing predictable, reliable, and legible service.
Create dense and mixed-use developments around transit stops to increase transit ridership. Provide a high-quality public realm, walkable streets, comfortable station design, and interchange between complementary modes to further attract ridership, and compound transit benefits. Small collective transport generally offers a flexible operation when stops are not necessarily established or formalized. Planning stops for these type of services can be beneficial for both mass transit and small collective transport.
Integrated transit services extend network connectivity and increase the area covered by transit, encouraging modal shifts. Design quality transfer points to facilitate the safe integration between different types of transit services, such as rapid mass transit and local collective transport.
Measure transit network performance based on the user ability to conveniently reach destinations and the cost to do so. Fixed routes at predictable intervals with broad coverage areas and frequent services perform well for passengers. A single metric, such as the average travel time in a system, is not sufficient. Create system-wide measures such as the number of jobs an average resident can reach in 30, 45 or 60 minutes. See: Measuring and Evaluating Streets.